Bellator 54 provided improved audience figures on MTV2 this week with 185,000 tuning in to see the live show.
That’s up 83,000 from the previous weekend which had marked an all-time low point for the promotion on the station.
The sudden upturn comes as no suprise given that this was a rare weekend in which there was little in the way of competition from other rival MMA promotions like the UFC and Strikeforce.
This brief and certainly welcome respite for Bellator will continue into this coming weekend before the UFC returns with UFC 137 on Saturday, 29th October.
Nevertheless the reality is that as long as they continue to broadcast live on a Saturday night they are giong to encounter a significant fluctuation in their ratings depending on who else is broadcasting on the same evening.
After this past weekend’s event Bellator CEO Bjorn Rebney did however indicate that they are not opposed to changing the night of their weekly shows in the future.
Personally I do hope they make some kind of change as unfortunately as things stand the promotion does often get overlooked in it’s current position.
The problem will be to find a different night that can still work for them. Currently Friday seems like a good idea, but that won’t neccessarily be the case in 2012 as FX are planning to make that night a showcase for their live incarnation of ‘The Ultimate Fighter’ which could again steal the audience away from what Bellator are doing.
They could also return to their old Thursday night slot from before they joined with MTV2, but while that works for the television audience and the MMA media, Rebney points out that it’s not ideal in terms of drawing a live crowd, something that’s already a big challenge for a weekly show that stretches around the country.
All things considered I like the idea of putting Bellator on a Sunday night. It worked fairly well for the WEC over on Versus in terms of tv ratings and attendance at times, while it would also steer them clear of any conflict with most of their major competitors like the UFC and Strikeforce.
See the TV ratings for season 5 so far below.
- Bellator 48 ratings: 226,000
- Bellator 49 ratings: 235,000
- Bellator 50 ratings: 114,000
- Bellator 51 ratings: 158,000
- Bellator 52 ratings: 269,000
- Bellator 53 ratings: 103,000
- Bellator 54 ratings: 185,000